Shadow and Bone


Leigh Bardugo

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Shadow and Bone: After Summary & Analysis

Alina and Mal stand at the railing of the ship every day. The Kerch crew calls them fentomen, or ghosts—because they’re pale and stare at the sea like they’ve never seen water before. Alina doesn’t share that she’s looking for a ship with black sails. Mal and Alina had to hide before they could book passage on this ship. They heard rumors about what happened in Novokribirsk and heard that some people blame the Darkling. They’ve heard that the Apparat disappeared, that foreign troops are missing, and that the Sun Summoner is dead. They never hear that the Darkling is dead.
Alina discovers that being on the run means going without a lot of important information—such as who died in Novokribirsk and, specifically, if the Darkling is still out there. However, it is clear that there’s unrest in Ravka due to what happened in the Fold, suggesting that the Darkling’s takeover and Alina’s departure haven’t yet fixed anything.
Desperation, Leadership, and Corruption Theme Icon
Mal holds Alina tight every night, as she constantly has nightmares—she can hear the screaming people she left behind on the skiff. Alina and Mal are orphans again, alone in the world. But they have each other.
Already, Alina’s ghosts have come back to haunt her, suggesting that she will someday have to account for the people she allowed to die in the Fold. But she now knows who she is: someone who loves Mal, and someone who can make her own choices about her body and her power.
Identity and Self-Knowledge Theme Icon
Greed vs. Mercy Theme Icon